Foods With Flavonols Linked to Reduced Risk of Frailty
Eating plant-based foods that contain dietary compounds called flavonols can lower the chances of developing frailty.
Foods like apples and blackberries that contain flavonoids called quercetin may be the most important for frailty prevention. The findings were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition article, "Higher Intake of Dietary Flavonols, Specifically Dietary Quercetin, Is Associated With Lower Odds of Frailty Onset Over 12 Years of Follow-Up Among Adults in the Framingham Heart Study.” This is one of the first community-based studies that comprehensively examined the role of dietary flavonoids in frailty prevention.
Approximately 10% to 15% of older adults experience frailty, a geriatric syndrome that leads to a greater risk of falls, fractures, disability, hospitalization, and mortality. Current dietary recommendations for frailty prevention primarily focus on protein intake. However, there are many other foods that may have health benefits.
The frailty study had 1,701 participants that underwent frailty assessment at baseline and at follow-up. About 55.5% of participants were women, with an average age of 58.4. After the 12-year follow-up, about 13% of participants developed frailty.
“There may be some validity to the old saying, an apple a day keeps the doctor (or frailty) away,” the authors say. “Our findings suggest that for every 10 mg higher intake of flavonols per day, the odds of frailty were reduced by 20%. Individuals can easily consume 10 mg of flavonols per day since one medium-sized apple has about 10 mg of flavonols.”
“Although there was no significant association between total flavonoid intake and frailty, higher intake of flavonols (one of the subclasses of flavonoids) was associated with lower odds of developing frailty. Specifically, higher quercetin intake was the flavonoid that had the strongest association with frailty prevention. These data suggest that there may be particular subclasses of flavonoids that have the most potential as a dietary strategy for frailty prevention,” says coauthor Shivani Sahni, PhD, of the department of medicine at Hebrew SeniorLife.
The authors suggest that future research should focus on dietary interventions of flavonols or quercetin for the treatment of frailty. Research also is needed on racially and ethnically diverse participants.
— Source: Hebrew SeniorLife Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research
Low-Carb Diets Can Improve Blood Pressure and Blood Sugar Levels
Adults with hypertension, prediabetes, or type 2 diabetes and who are overweight or obese are at an increased risk of serious health complications. However, experts disagree about which dietary patterns and support strategies should be recommended.
Researchers randomized 94 adults with the aforementioned conditions, using a 2x2 diet-by-support factorial design, comparing a very low-carbohydrate (VLC) or ketogenic diet vs a DASH diet. In addition, they compared results with and without extra support activities, such as mindful eating, positive emotion regulation, social support, and cooking education.
Using intent-to-treat analyses, the VLC diet led to greater improvement in estimated mean systolic blood pressure (–9.8 mm Hg vs –5.2 mm Hg, P = 0.046), greater improvement in glycosylated hemoglobin (–0.4% vs –0.1%, P = 0.034), and greater improvement in weight (–19.14 lbs vs –10.33 lbs, P = 0.0003), compared with the DASH diet. The addition of extra support didn’t have a statistically significant effect on outcomes.
For adults with hypertension, prediabetes, or type 2 diabetes and who are overweight or obese, a VLC diet demonstrated greater improvements in systolic blood pressure, glycemic control, and weight over a four-month period compared with a DASH diet.
Nearly one-half (47%) of adults in the United States have hypertension, and about one-half have prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. Approximately 42% of adults in the United States also are obese. These conditions can trigger stroke, end-stage renal disease, myocardial infarction, and premature death. While first-line treatment for these individuals should be a diet and lifestyle intervention, experts disagree over which diet should be recommended.
For adults who are overweight or obese and have hypertension as well as prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, a VLC diet demonstrated greater improvements in systolic blood pressure, glycemic control, and weight over a four-month period compared with a DASH diet.
— Source: American Academy of Family Physicians